In SEO there are no charges applied on clicks to your website. Paid listings on the other hand charge you every time someone clicks on your listing and visits your website irrespective of whether a sale is made or not. The cost per click varies depending on the demand of the keyword you are targeting.
Competitive keywords can cost as high as $1-$75 per click whereas keywords in less demand may only cost a few cents per click. In any case they quickly add up and are a drain on your budget. SEO on the other hand results in free organic placements where there is no continued cost for clicks. Users perceive organic results to be more relevant and credible than paid listings. More than 75% of search engine users report they feel organic listings are more relevant than paid listings. Users are also aware that anyone can get listed under paid results whereas organic listings are more honest and achieved on the basis of quality content and relevance.
As users tend to click on organic search results when compared to PPC ads, Organic listings generate a higher ROI than PPC programs. Trends also show that more sales result from organic search engine listings than paid sites. On the other hand, only 1 in 10 businesses report achieving better ROI through a paid search than an organic search engine optimization campaign. Any investment of your time or resources in SEO is for the long term as opposed to PPC where the results are relatively short-lived. Paid listings are displayed only for the period you advertise and your listing disappears completely when your budget is exhausted or the service terminated. On the contrary, SEO results take time to accumulate but once achieved your listing will remain for a very long time, even if you stop or reduce SEO tasks.
PPC programmers also suffer from click fraud. This takes place typically when competitors click on your ads in order to exhaust your advertising budget. This is one of the major concerns for PPC advertisers. Although search engines such as Google have taken a number of steps to detect click fraud and protect your account, it is not possible to account for all such cases.
Surveys have reported as high as 3 out of 4 advertisers falling victim to click fraud. Other estimates for click fraud show that it affects 15-30% of all clicks. This is not relevant to SEO as you are not charged for the number of clicks.
Organic placements provide high quality of traffic. More users click on the natural results versus the pay per click ads. The better quality of traffic is also reflected in conversion rates. Studies report that the conversion rates for organic SEO tends to be approximately 25% higher than paid listings.
Organic SEO also report of better click through rates. Research shows that organic click through rates can be up to 3 times higher than paid listings. At the same time, only around 20% of search engine users will view a paid listing.
Although in the long-term SEO is the better option, it common for businesses to use both SEO and Pay Per Click to promote their website. PPC also has its advantages. Organic SEO placements can take time to achieve. As a result PPC can be an excellent option in the short term giving you fast results within just hours or days. Some businesses prefer to use both strategies in same time
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